CHECK-IN I arrived at Luton Parkway station at 1550 and caught
the shuttle bus, which was waiting outside, to the airport for £1. The journey
took around six minutes and I was soon in the short queue for check-in. Once I
had got rid of my suitcase I went up the escalator on the opposite side to a
preliminary security check where guards were handing out clear plastic bags for
bottles of liquid. I then joined a very long snaking queue for the main
security check. Despite it looking like it would take forever, I was through
within 15 minutes, and wandering around the shops in departures.
The hand luggage limit with Easyjet is one piece with maximum dimensions of 55 x 40 x 20cm – there is no weight limitation, but passengers must be able to lift it safely and place it in the overhead bins. Customers are allowed up to eight pieces of checked-in hold baggage with a combined weight of 20kg. There is a £5 each-way fee for checking in bags when you book online, or a higher charge if you do it at the airport.
BOARDING My flight to Nice aboard an
Easyjet B737-700 was scheduled for 1810 but wasn’t called until 1750, when Gate
25 flashed up on the board. Although there were a lot of people waiting to
board, I was in queue A (reserved for people who booked online and the first 30
people to arrive at the airport) so was in ahead of many passengers, but those
who had paid £14.50 (return) for Speedy Boarding Plus (prices vary depending on
the route) were called before me, so had first choice of where to sit on the
aircraft. At 1800, I crossed the tarmac and went up the steps at the front
entrance of the plane.
THE SEAT I was in my seat (18A just behind the wing) by 1805. It was surprisingly comfy and clean, with disposable orange headrest covers on each seat, but once I was joined by a man sitting next to me, it felt a little claustrophobic. (Seats are configured 3-3 and generally have a pitch of 29 inches.)
THE FLIGHT With only eight free seats, the
flight was almost full. We started taxiing at 1825, and the pilot announced
that the journey should take around one hour and 55 minutes. At 1910 the
stewardess came round with the Easy Kiosk, selling hot and cold drinks, snacks
and alcoholic beverages. Although take-off was at 1835 we made up 15 minutes
and landed at 2115 local time.
ARRIVAL Disembarkation was prompt and I was soon through immigration. My luggage arrived within five minutes and soon I was outside and waiting for shuttle bus 99 to take me into Nice. (Tickets for €4 must be bought from the office opposite the stop. Journey time to Nice central station is around 30 minutes.)
VERDICT An efficient and reliable service, great for short flights and cheap weekend getaways.
PRICE Return flights from London Luton to Nice start from around £50.